Queen Victoria eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 326 pages of information about Queen Victoria.
of him, that his advice would probably not be taken, but that, if anything were to go wrong, it would be certainly the foreign doctor who would be blamed.  Very soon, indeed, he came to the opinion that the low diet and constant bleedings, to which the unfortunate Princess was subjected, were an error; he drew the Prince aside, and begged him to communicate this opinion to the English doctors; but it was useless.  The fashionable lowering treatment was continued for months.  On November 5, at nine o’clock in the evening, after a labour of over fifty hours, the Princess was delivered of a dead boy.  At midnight her exhausted strength gave way.  When, at last, Stockmar consented to see her; he went in, and found her obviously dying, while the doctors were plying her with wine.  She seized his hand and pressed it.  “They have made me tipsy,” she said.  After a little he left her, and was already in the next room when he heard her call out in her loud voice:  “Stocky!  Stocky!” As he ran back the death-rattle was in her throat.  She tossed herself violently from side to side; then suddenly drew up her legs, and it was over.

The Prince, after hours of watching, had left the room for a few moments’ rest; and Stockmar had now to tell him that his wife was dead.  At first he could not be made to realise what had happened.  On their way to her room he sank down on a chair while Stockmar knelt beside him:  it was all a dream; it was impossible.  At last, by the bed, he, too, knelt down and kissed the cold hands.  Then rising and exclaiming, “Now I am quite desolate.  Promise me never to leave me,” he threw himself into Stockmar’s arms.


The tragedy at Claremont was of a most upsetting kind.  The royal kaleidoscope had suddenly shifted, and nobody could tell how the new pattern would arrange itself.  The succession to the throne, which had seemed so satisfactorily settled, now became a matter of urgent doubt.

George III was still living, an aged lunatic, at Windsor, completely impervious to the impressions of the outer world.  Of his seven sons, the youngest was of more than middle age, and none had legitimate offspring.  The outlook, therefore, was ambiguous.  It seemed highly improbable that the Prince Regent, who had lately been obliged to abandon his stays, and presented a preposterous figure of debauched obesity, could ever again, even on the supposition that he divorced his wife and re-married, become the father of a family.  Besides the Duke of Kent, who must be noticed separately, the other brothers, in order of seniority, were the Dukes of York, Clarence, Cumberland, Sussex, and Cambridge; their situations and prospects require a brief description.  The Duke of York, whose escapades in times past with Mrs. Clarke and the army had brought him into trouble, now divided his life between London and a large, extravagantly ordered and extremely uncomfortable country house where

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Queen Victoria from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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